Minneapolis, Minn. – Democrat Al Franken’s new ad calls into question his sincerity about the issue of rape. Minnesotans should be reminded that Sen. Franken was dogged in 2008 by disturbing jokes he made about the sexual assault of women, with several Democratic women in the state calling on him for an apology.
“Minnesota women haven’t forgotten Senator Franken’s sick and disgusting humor when he talked about raping women. Al Franken is just trying to mask his own hypocrisy. It’s absolutely disingenuous and appalling for Senator Franken to talk about helping rape victims when he himself joked about sexually assaulting women,” said Brittni Palke, MNGOP Spokeswoman.
Franken Flashback: Franken Dogged By Rape Jokes In 2008
SICK! Franken Jokes About Raping Lesley Stahl. “Franken: And, ‘I give the pills to Lesley Stahl. Then, when Lesley’s passed out, I take her to the closet and rape her.’ Or, ‘That’s why you never see Lesley until February.’ Or, ‘When she passes out, I put her in various positions and take pictures of her.’”
(“Comedy Isn’t Funny: Saturday Night Live At Twenty—How The Show That Transformed TV Became A Grim Joke,” New York Magazine, March 13, 1995)
Snickered When Describing Rape Skit. FRANKEN: “Well, uh, first of all, I actually – what I wrote was a parody, it was in Playboy and it was a parody of, of um Playboy. And it was intended for the readers of Playboy and it actually was satirical. That wasn’t really – you know, I feel bad that that caused people legitimately to be offended. U, the remarks that were in the NY Times – uh, I’m sorry – New York Magazine uh were legitimately offensive and I apologize for that. Uh, this was a brainstorming session at SNL and you know I said something [snickers] in it that was indefensible and I apologize for that, I’m generally sorry, but it really kills me, as I said, it just – I’m a human being, and it hurts me that some mistakes I made made people feel that uh I’m – I don’t have a dedication to to women and women’s rights and to all Minnesotans that I do have.” (Al Franken, “Midday,” Minnesota Public Radio, June 9, 2008)
Franken On Why Abortion Should Be Allowed In Cases Of Rape: “Rapists Are Notoriously Bad In Terms Of Being Supportive Of Their Kids.”
(Al Franken Show, Air America Radio, February 6, 2007)
State Sen. Saltzman And Rep. Wollschlager React. “And Sen. Kathy Saltzman of Woodbury and Rep. Sandy Wollschlager of Cannon Falls both released a statement saying: As Minnesotans, we find the articles written by Mr. Franken to be most disturbing. While some may describe these writings to be satire, comedy, or an expression of free speech, we find them offensive and highly inappropriate when linked to a candidate for the United States Senate. The standard for any party should be doing the people’s work and the prism through which candidates should be vetted and policies examined. While many still believe that Mr. Franken is a viable candidate for endorsement, we find it very difficult to see past these actions.”
(Rachel Stassen- Berger, “Bad day for Al Franken,” Political Animal Blog, June 5, 2008)
McCollum On Rape Sketch. “Democratic Senate candidate Al Franken’s bad day (read about it here) got worse. Rep. Betty McCollum, a supporter of former Senate candidate Mike Ciresi (who is leaving all options on the table), released a statement: ‘Planned Parenthood understands that Minnesotans evaluate our political candidates based on their record, values and character. It is appalling that anyone could characterize rape, a violent and horrible crime, as a joke,’ said Congresswoman Betty McCollum”
(Rachel Stassen- Berger, “Franken’s day got worse,” Political Animal Blog, June 5, 2008)
Franken says that Jewish skin tone comes from being raped by Mongols. “Mongols came through and raped – and raped Jews. And uh…we’re a little yellow.”
(Transcript, “Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” NBC, September 30, 2004)